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Facebook Lexicon Detective Work

September 22nd, 2008 by Conor Lastowka · 56 Comments

Facebook Lexicon is a new amazing way to waste time.  Search terms provide a graph of the frequency of a term showing up on Facebook “Wall Posts”.  It’s fun to compare certain ones, and when strange spikes appear it’s interesting to try and pinpoint how come.  My friend Praveen has been going nuts on it and we made some interesting discoveries:

Drunk vs hungover

Drunk in blue, hungover in orange.  Major downspike on Christmas, with the uptick in both soon to follow on New Years.  You can see it peaking each weekend as well.


I was happy to see the April 17th spike for “high five” on National High Five Day

slutty nurse angel devil cat

Slutty, Nurse, Angel, Devil and Cat all peak around Halloween.  Lexicon unfortunately does not link to examples.

Burrito Chipotle

As do burrito and chipotle.  Some research reveals that Chipotle has a policy of giving free burritos to anyone dressed as a burrito.  Twice this month the local Chipotle gave away burritos to anyone with a zoo membership or a library card and the lines were out the door.  Earning the free five dollar burrito took at least half an hour, and I’d do it again, dammit.

moo meow oink

Moo, Meow and Oink are shown above.  Lots of slutty cats are presumably the reason for the Halloween Meow spike.  Oink trails far behind both of the other animal sounds, except for a few days before Halloween, when Facebook users en masse lamented the dearly departed torrent mecca Oink’s Pink Palace


The graph for “pregnant”.  The December spike comes from Jamie Lynn’s announcement. The April one had us a bit more confused until we zoomed in to the exact date and realized it was the product of hundreds of April Fool’s Day Pregnancy announcements.  Amazing.


I thought the graph for Dead might turn up a similar rash of hoaxes, but it only shows one spike on 1/22: Heath Ledger.

indy colts

Indy and Colts graphed here.  Colts spikes for two big losses, vs the Patriots and Chargers, but Indy takes over mid may when Kingdom of the Crystal Skull debuted two days before the Indy 500


Black, white, red, blue and green.  Green gets the biggest spike of all as people attempt to avoid pinches on St. Patricks Day.  Black represents as deal hunters get ready to trample the pregnant and elderly for ten dollar DVD players on Black Friday.  Red enjoyed several peaks a few days a part that confounded me, but Praveen figured out that they represented Red Sox World Series games. Red is also big on Valentines Day,and White’s big peak comes the day after Christmas…


I’ll leave you with this mystery image.  First to guess what word the above image was for wins a free RiffTrax on me!

And please post any interesting Lexicon discoveries or mysteries you find in the comments.

Tags: RiffTrax

56 responses so far ↓

  • 1 OmegaRowsdower on Sep 22, 2008 at 7:11 pm

    First one here… ahh….
    Well, my guess…


    probably too obvious… but then… maybe not….

  • 2 OmegaRowsdower on Sep 22, 2008 at 7:13 pm

    and subconsciously admits lack of detective skills as I didn’t look a single thing up….
    (also the same reason I can’t beat any Phoenix Wright games :( )

  • 3 Conor Lastowka on Sep 22, 2008 at 7:25 pm

    Actually, I hadn’t looked up bacon, but it’s biggest peak comes on the mystery images biggest valley…interesting:

  • 4 justhesh on Sep 22, 2008 at 7:32 pm

    “but Indy takes over mid may when Kingdom of the Crystal Skull debuted two days before the Indy 500″

    What brilliant synergy!

  • 5 Scooter on Sep 22, 2008 at 7:49 pm

    Futurama spikes around the times when the movies were released, but otherwise doesn’t even register

  • 6 Scooter on Sep 22, 2008 at 7:52 pm

    also, the mystery is Happy Birthday, I believe

  • 7 jfruh on Sep 22, 2008 at 8:06 pm

    I admit to being totally immature and looking up “sex,” only to be horrified by a stunning spike in late May. (Turns out, released ate of “Sex and the City” movie, duh).

  • 8 Conor Lastowka on Sep 22, 2008 at 8:26 pm

    That was one of the first I looked up and was baffled by it, but my friend had already looked it up and knew the answer.

  • 9 Praveen on Sep 22, 2008 at 8:26 pm


  • 10 Conor Lastowka on Sep 22, 2008 at 8:27 pm

    Just ‘birthday’ actually, but you win. Poor Leap Day b-day havers! Email me at conor at rifftrax dot com to claim your prize.

  • 11 ArthurSpeakman on Sep 22, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    My theory was Leap Year, but those are valleys. Crud. As for interesting, it seems pretty much all entries dip after Christmas, as everyone is presumably away from their computer.


  • 12 Slade Rockfist on Sep 22, 2008 at 8:34 pm

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen so much useless information all in one place before…..except on the actual Facebook Lexicon, of course…

  • 13 gojikranz on Sep 22, 2008 at 9:49 pm

    huge spike in facebook sucks with implementation of the new facebook.

  • 14 justhesh on Sep 23, 2008 at 1:04 am

    Some of those are made up of statements from Bill, I am sure.

  • 15 Auntie Maim on Sep 23, 2008 at 5:16 am

    This is far, FAR too fascinating!! I’ve never been so glad that my employer’s filter blocks Facebook.

  • 16 ZachDaniel on Sep 23, 2008 at 5:45 am

    Fascninating! I searched for “wounded” not knowing what to expect – HUGE spike on Feb. 14 o.O

  • 17 ZachDaniel on Sep 23, 2008 at 5:46 am

    PS. This was after my attempt to search for “knife wound” found zero results. Refreshing.

  • 18 Tom on Sep 23, 2008 at 5:55 am

    Hmmmm..Could it be “Alchohol” since those dips appear to occur on Christmas day, New Year’s day and Ash Wednesday- all days when one would be likely to suffer a hangover.

  • 19 Smuttynose on Sep 23, 2008 at 6:09 am

    “Conor” had no data.
    “Corbett” had no date.
    “Rifftrax” had no data.
    “Smuttynose” had no data.
    “State Quarters” had no data.

    “Bacon”, however, was there with a wierd spike in late February.

  • 20 Smuttynose on Sep 23, 2008 at 6:11 am

    Ah, the heart is wounded on Valentine’s day. Interesting indeed… and glad there was no “knife wound” as well.

  • 21 MST3Kelly on Sep 23, 2008 at 6:49 am

    curse you, Conor! first ‘pruane2′ and now this!

    I am like a moth to a flame.
    sad, really.

  • 22 Conor Lastowka on Sep 23, 2008 at 7:23 am

    My only consolation is that neither does “sexman”

  • 23 Smuttynose on Sep 23, 2008 at 7:32 am

    Right. And neither does “Stinky the Hutt”, although just the word “stinky” spikes every Thursday morning at 3AM. Wierd.

  • 24 Nerf on Sep 23, 2008 at 7:36 am

    This one is sort of cool….
    Can anyone figure out the spike for the number “3″ on Valentines Day? It may be really easy if you’re younger.
    Also, what’s the reason for the spike for the number “4″ in mid April? That may show what kind of person you are.

  • 25 Smuttynose on Sep 23, 2008 at 7:39 am

    “3″ is for me, my girl, and love. Awww.

    “4″ is the same on they keyboard as “$”, therefore denoting April 15… the tax deadline.

    I’m just winging it here. Obvious?

  • 26 Triangle O. Daver on Sep 23, 2008 at 8:10 am

    Speaking of which: “blowjob” has a huge spike in mid-March. Regardless of how you celebrate the Ides of March, it seems a little strange to write about it on your Facebook wall…

  • 27 Melman on Sep 23, 2008 at 8:16 am

    “Vagina” gets a huge spike in mid february. I am baffled.

  • 28 suzanne on Sep 23, 2008 at 8:32 am

    all this lexiconning is taking away my precious “i want you to finish the goddamn state quarters” time.

    and it’s taking away your time to finish it.

    i highly suggest putting facebook on your computer’s blacklist.

  • 29 suzanne on Sep 23, 2008 at 8:33 am

    meant to reply to the original post. but lexicon has stolen my concentration. did you know “pants” has a huge bulge at aug. 1? ha. hahah.

  • 30 Au$10 on Sep 23, 2008 at 9:06 am

    Excellent research, sir.

  • 31 Smuttynose on Sep 23, 2008 at 9:10 am

    Bacon product update!

    Piece in heart, fragrance in mouth…

  • 32 Auntie Maim on Sep 23, 2008 at 9:23 am

    Nah, “3″ is from people “hearting” each other –> <3

    Isn’t it cute?

    And “4″ could be from 1040…but that’s too boring to be true.

  • 33 Jer on Sep 23, 2008 at 9:25 am

    “chihuahua” had quite a spike last october…

  • 34 Nerf on Sep 23, 2008 at 9:40 am

    “4″ is from 4:20 the national holiday.

  • 35 Smuttynose on Sep 23, 2008 at 10:58 am

    Aw, dude I should have TOTALLY got that one… but… (cough)… what?

  • 36 runnerman on Sep 23, 2008 at 11:51 am

    I believe it is caused by national “Steak and Blowjob Day” on March 14th.

  • 37 Triangle O. Daver on Sep 23, 2008 at 12:42 pm

    Good call, runnerman. I had no idea such a holiday even existed. I guess it’s NOT some perverse way of remembering the murder of Julius Caesar, then.

  • 38 Barry on Sep 23, 2008 at 5:49 pm

    I wanted to check on Joey Pants, but the stupid Lexicon requires stupid Flash, and I refuse to sell out to the stupid Man.

  • 39 Meredith on Sep 23, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    “pluto” has a huge spike on May 18th, when new moons were discovered.

    “cookie” has a huge drop in mid-December, for reasons unknown.

    Typing random words has never been so interesting.

  • 40 NavarezElectro on Sep 23, 2008 at 6:43 pm

    The postings regarding tested words sound like one-liners from seasoned Catskill comedians. Oh, for fun!

  • 41 NavarezElectro on Sep 23, 2008 at 6:49 pm

    I love these postings! I found myself reading “‘cookie’ has a huge drop in mid-December” in a Kevin Murphyesque newsreel narrator voice.

    “Good Evening, Mr. and Mrs. America and all the ships at sea. For reasons unknown, the word ‘cookie’ has registered a huge drop in mid-December. More later on this intriguing development.”

  • 42 MST3Kelly on Sep 23, 2008 at 6:54 pm

    huh. this is interesting- if you enter the word ‘Lexicon’ you get nothing. hmmm.

    hey- wait a minute-

  • 43 NavarezElectro on Sep 23, 2008 at 7:07 pm

    And in hommage to Mr. Walter Winchell, of course.

    “‘Ball Bearings’ fell in late April, while ‘Bubbles’ continues to rise. Stay tuned.”

  • 44 MST3Kelly on Sep 23, 2008 at 7:10 pm

    hey Scooter good going! you got it! oddly, I found that ‘peanut butter’ produced almost the same spike pattern.
    mmm- spiky peanut butter–

  • 45 Ed on Sep 23, 2008 at 8:07 pm

    “Pants” gets a spike on August 1st.

    This… this has me flummoxed. I mean, I’ve often considered August 1st a good day to wear pants, yes, but this still seems a little extreme.

  • 46 RobtheBarbarian on Sep 23, 2008 at 11:43 pm

    Canada is mentioned more around the 4th of July than America is.

    People break up more in November and March?

    People feel fat after Thanksgiving and call other people fat on Valentines Day!

  • 47 RobtheBarbarian on Sep 23, 2008 at 11:57 pm

    People only talk about monkeys on weekdays.

  • 48 Triangle O. Daver on Sep 24, 2008 at 5:22 am

    Perhaps it has something to do with “The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants 2″, which came out on August 6?

  • 49 Praveen on Sep 24, 2008 at 9:34 am

    Speaking of “wounded”, I think “injured” and “injury” reveal Favre (Nov 2007), D. Wade (Feb), and Brady (9/7)

  • 50 Praveen on Sep 24, 2008 at 9:42 am

    “fat” in Feb is probably Fat Tuesday

  • 51 Praveen on Sep 24, 2008 at 9:43 am

    Canada Day is Jul 1

  • 52 Praveen on Sep 24, 2008 at 9:47 am

    The “vagina” spike is squarely on Valentine’s Day, which, interestingly, is the one time EVER that “vagina” > “penis”:

  • 53 Josh on Sep 25, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    MySpace lost its popularity contest to Facebook on April 15th:

    What’s with the dips of “love” on April 11th, May 15th and August 15th?

    The almighty F word? It gains momentum during each weekday then drops off on the weekends. Haha!

  • 54 Flipper74 on Sep 29, 2008 at 4:39 pm

    The word “hate” dips on the weekend (in addition to Christmas and New Year’s).

  • 55 SJC on Oct 25, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    Probably because the day is “Canada Day” where the 4th of July is not “America Day”

    Also, would “break up” be because of ending college semesters?

  • 56 bob on Feb 21, 2009 at 6:13 pm

    Anyone find the reason for the horrible spike in November?,economy#/lexicon/index.php?q=nigger